Is this a guarantee? Is Seth guaranteeing something for tonight?
I mean I guess, for all 22 people that read this site consistently I’ll put a guarantee on it. The Bruins are going to bounce back tonight I know that for sure.
Are they going to come shot out of a cannon and rack up 34 goals before the end of the game? Probably not. Possible… but not likely.
Instead, I just expect the Bruins to not shit themselves on the road like they did the other night. It’s funny, the B’s could have won that game despite playing the exact opposite of how they did in Boston.
Did I spell that right? The point is if you really thought the Bruins were going to stroll into Toronto and go up 3-0 in their opening round series I would have called you insane.
I know the Bruins dismantled and eviscerated Toronto’s existence in the first two games but at the end of the day, it was just two games that Bruins won on their home ice.
Toronto is not a bad hockey team. They have young talent that (surprise) feels comfortable playing at home and that’s what we saw. Auston Matthews finally decided to put his uniform on and the Leafs looked like they knew how to play hockey.
Now we arrive at the game tonight. The Bruins dominated the first two games because of three key factors.
Green Light Offense
Instead of looking for that perfect cross-crease pass or draining the power play down to 10 seconds looking for the ideal shot… The Bruins used game 1 & 2 to completely light it up with shots.
There’s no such thing as a bad shot if you’re inside the offensive zone and the Bruins I expect will get back to that tonight. There were a couple key times in Game 3 where I felt they tried to make the extra pass when they could have just kept firing.
I don’t want to make it seem like the Bruins aren’t getting enough shots. They still outshot Toronto 42-30 in Game 3 and the Bruins were victims of a couple unlucky posts. I just expect them to use this loss as a little kick in the pants and bring the offense.
The Bruins were absolutely MURDERING the Leafs with lethal hits along the boards in Game 1 & Game 2. The Bruins actually got out hit in Game 2 but that game was honestly an outlier since it was over before the end of the first period.
Kevan Miller inside of “Miller’s Corner” according to Pierre McGuire was giving the Leaf youngins nightmares. Toronto doesn’t want to mix it up in the corners. The Bruins are bigger and stronger.
Toronto’s style of play is similar to a pace and space offense in basketball. Speed kills. They want to get into a theoretical track meet with teams and they don’t have much of an interest in grinding in the corners.
I expect the Bruins to put the body on these guys from Jump Street and outhit the Leafs tonight. They’ll have the home ice but nothing will come easy.
Tuukka Rask Being Good
I don’t want to say Tuukka was bad the other night. I know the haters will be all over him with the “SEE? HE CAN’T EVER STEAL YOU A GAME!” kind of takes but I just think that’s a load of garbage.
Rask has been a stud this series. Games 1 & 2 were incredible efforts packed with key save after key save. He happened to get outdueled by Andersen who was playing for his life the other night after the first two games in Boston. There were a lot of shots that Rask probably wishes he could have back but I believe he’s going to shake that one off.
I expect a stronger defensive showing in front of him. Tuukka Rask is good and don’t you freaking forget it. Expect him to be good tonight.
3-1 vs 2-2
This is really the biggest reason I expect the Bruins to bounce back tonight. I know it seems odd but it’s pretty simple.
The difference in a series between 3-1 and 2-2 is absolutely absurd. Teams down 3-1 come back to win the series just under 10% of the time… I don’t really need to go in what 2-2 means because you’re essentially just running it back from scratch.
The Bruins understand this. Although they’re young they have enough guys in that locker room who get that when you have the opportunity to throw a dagger into a team you have to take advantage.
Bruce Cassidy & The Sundance Kids will know that when they step out tonight and I expect it to reflect in the final score.